101st Airborne Spc. Rafael A. Nieves Jr. was killed in action on 10th July 2011 in Paktika province, Afghanistan during a battle with enemy forces. The 22-year-old, from Albany, New York, died from wounds sustained after his vehicle came under small-arms and RPG fire.
Spc. Nieves served with the 1st Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), based at Fort Campbell, Kentucky.
Spc. Nieves leaves his wife Sarah A. McKinney, their two children, Emma Grace and Rafael A. III, his father, Rafael A. Nieves Sr. and his mother, Tina R. Roman.